Assuring good social work practice and development
4.1 Practice supervisors should confidently and consistently model professionalism and high standards of social work practice. They should critically reflect on and evaluate their own continuing professional development and ensure that their knowledge of social work practice, theoretical perspectives and research is current and maintained. They should develop systems for disseminating their knowledge and skills and for evaluating its impact on practice.
4.2 Practice supervisors should ensure that social workers apply a person-centred and holistic approach in their practice which is respectful and empowering for individuals and their carers. They should ensure that evidence based methods and tools are used by social workers in their assessments and interventions. They should ensure that a social worker’s actions are proportionate to the identified risk and need and satisfy the procedural requirements of the organisation. Practice supervisors should model and ensure a personalised approach to safeguarding, maximising an individual’s opportunity to determine and realise their desired outcomes.
4.3 Practice supervisors should use supervision to challenge the balance of authoritative intervention and collaborative engagement and to clarify how practice is achieving the best outcomes for adults and their carers. They should use an explorative questioning style to uncover assumptions and analyse judgments, to clarify the focus of the practitioner’s work and to identify what changes the social worker needs to make in their approach e.g. more reflective or more active. They should ensure that individual and carer perspectives are sought, listened to and understood and that they are engaged in shaping plans and supported to carry these out to achieve positive changes to their well-being and independence; progress should be regularly reviewed and plans adjusted to achieve the desired outcomes.
4.4 Practice supervisors must implement effective strategies for ensuring the throughput of work and ensure no individual is unnoticed in the system. They should regularly review the requirement for continued involvement in the lives of people who use services and close cases in a timely manner, having considered the need for any ongoing support.
The full Knowledge and Skills Statement for Social Work Practice Supervisors in Adult Social Care can be viewed on the Department of Health and Social care website.
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